Monday, 25 November 2013

American Adventure Part III

I've finally got round to writing about the third part of our adventure- Vegas! 
It was great after so much travelling around to stop, hand back the car and just be lazy. And for me, drink again (yippee!) I could barely contain my excitement on the way in- driving towards the strip is really something else, so bright and welcoming. We stayed at Luxor (the big pyramid) for the first 6 nights, which was a step up from last time at Terribles Casino. Our room was actually part of the pyramid and so had a sloping wall on the side of the window.

Our first of not many wins
Outside Luxor

 We had fun on the first night wandering around all of our favourite haunts from last time- a particular highlight on that night was the duelling pianos in a bar in New York New York. I love this hotel because you can actually walk around 'mini New York,' with apartment blocks and stuff.

New York New York
Our friends Rhian and Adam arrived the next day. We visited them at their hotel room in Paris, which looked out on the Bellagio fountains themselves! Lovely. Together we had some adventures: drinking alcoholic iced drinks in tall refillable cups, riding the roller coaster at New York, New York and playing on the kids games, trying our hand at gambling. 

At Senor Frogs
Trying to play the slots (I don't get it!)
They couldn't help themselves
Just like last time, Lee and I chickened out of playing any 'proper' games, opting instead for  'the big wheel.' Overall it wasn't too kind to us, but we did have one rather amazing night where we played for more than two hours with only twenty dollars! And of course the waitresses bring you free drinks if you're playing, which we took advantage of (about six each if I remember rightly). Crazy really when you think a Jack Daniels and Coke in the Bellagio where we were playing is somewhere between five and ten dollars a drink. We also went to see the Cirque Du Soleil show Mystere. The acrobatics were mind blowing and the music, which included a live opera singer and huge drums, was amazing. I've decided I definitely want a big drum when I finally move into my own apartment.
On Halloween I'm ashamed to admit we didn't dress up, but we headed downtown to bask in the joy of everyone else's costumes. And Americans certainly go all out! It's not often you see middle aged people in full blown fancy dress. Shrek and Fiona, Dracula, a seventy year old Minnie Mouse, you name it. Some of the winning costumes for me were a box of wine, a piñata and an injection. On Freemont street in downtown was an outdoor rave going on with fire blasters around the stage.
We did so many things in our ten days in Vegas it would be impossible to write it all down. We lounged by the pool, went to see Bad Grandpa at the cinema (there was a couple in there with their toddler son-inappropriate much?) and walked for miles and miles taking in the sights and sounds. In the second week we moved to Circus Circus which was not so glamorous but we found the best game in a casino that was a bit like a working men's club- The Dogs! We spent so much time betting 50 cents a go on which computerised dog would come in first. Good times. We watched the volcano outside Mirage hotel, a fully blown erupting extravaganza. We went to see the Beatles Cirque Du Soleil show 'Love.' We ate at a lovely French restaurant and a an American restaurant where Lee had Chicken fried Steak and fries, with a side of Corn bread, enough to feed five people. 

The Beatles 'Love'
Watching the fountains at the Bellagio
 Our last day was weird and most unique. In the morning we headed downtown for the Million Mask March. It wasn't a huge turnout but we felt proud to be part of something that was going on worldwide- people standing together against corporate greed and corrupt governments.
After that we went to try and get cheap tickets to Le Reve- supposedly the best Cirque Du Soleil show in Vegas. We tried to do this last time but it didn't work out so great. The deal is you can get tickets for 75 dollars if you go to a presentation at the Jockey Club on buying a 'vacation timeshare.' You have to be married (check- we showed them photos as proof!) but last time we got kicked out because we told them we weren't currently working. I guess sometimes it's difficult for Americans to understand the concept of time off?! Anyway, we were briefed by the nice lady at the ticket booth (who Lee later told me was most definitely a post-op transsexual- and he knew this because they were flirting...) on how exactly not to F up. We went along to the Jockey Club and listened to quite a fun presentation about how we could improve our amount of vacation time for ourselves as a 'family.' Obviously as things have been going the past couple of years I think we actually need less time together and less holiday! Three gruelling hours later and a near escape from the purchase of some hotel gift vouchers we emerged with our Le Reve tickets clutched in our hands.
The show was worth every penny. It's an acrobatic extravaganza set on a circular stage in the middle of the audience, which submerges underwater and then reappears intermittently throughout the show. There was syncronised swimming, there was diving, there was acrobatics up high on wires. It was truly amazing! And they gave us a free program and let us take photos.
The Revolution is nigh

And so I conclude the blog posts entitled 'American Adventure.' It was a wicked trip, varied exciting and fun. Although I have to say it's nice to be out of the land of eternal unnecessary tipping and back at work!  

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